Keeping a food diary is a popular method that is now being employed by a variety of people around the world in order to make significant changes to their diet. Though starting a food diary can seem difficult at first, with time it will become habit. Here are three benefits of keeping a food diary for your entire family. Start today in order to get your family on the path to great health!
Track Nutritional Status
One of the most important ways that a family food diary can be used is to track the nutritional status of your family. Before you actually begin this process, it is important to understand exactly what foods your family needs for good health and optimal growth. According to the USDA, a healthy diet is composed of 6 to 11 servings of healthy grain products. These include whole grain breads, pastas, and crackers. Next, include 2 or 3 servings of fruit and 3 to 5 servings of vegetables. Finally, be sure that your family is eating 2 or 3 servings of meat and the same amount of dairy products for ideal health. Tracking how many of these items your family consumes and identifying areas in which they may be deficient is important in order to determine any potential health risks. If you do notice a regular absence of a particular food, be sure that the person who is deficient brings it up with their health care provider.
Record Food Expenses
Another great benefit of keeping a family food diary is that it allows a greater ability to see exactly where your food dollar is going. Try to record how much money is spent on dinners out as well as on meals prepared at home. Having a record of how you buy food will be able to provide you with the ability to make smarter food related purchases. For example, you may notice after examining your food diary that your family eats chicken twice a week. Instead of buying two small portions of chicken, you can buy one large portion and save some extra cash.
Support Weight Loss
Finally, a great way to use a family food diary is to help in weight loss goals. The development of obesity is a growing epidemic all over the world. By writing down exactly what you and your family are eating, you will be able to reduce the intake of fat and calories. Be sure that you and your family keep accurate records and examine them on a regular basis. Doing this will allow you to see when and what types of high fat, calorie dense foods you are eating and encourage you to make healthier food substitutions that have similar flavors but are lower in calories. Be aware that tracking your family’s diet may be difficult and time consuming, but is quite beneficial for the health of your family.